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July 6th, 2020

New York, NY

Contact: Elianne Ramos; Chief Communications Officer; [email protected]; 212.739.7513

Statement from Juan Cartagena on the killing of James García by Phoenix PD

Nearly four years to the day that Philando Castile was horrifically shot and killed in front of his partner and her four-year-old daughter by police during a routine traffic stop in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota, and a little over two weeks since LA County sheriffs murdered eighteen-year-old Andrés Guardado, we must again hold up the name of a young man of color – James García – executed by Phoenix police. 

Given that García sat in his car in broad daylight, pinned by a Phoenix police cruiser into the driveway where he was parked, as four officers with guns drawn surrounded his sedan and fired ten shots at him at pointblank range, execution is the only word that seems fitting to describe the event that would ultimately kill him and mark the department’s eighty-ninth officer-involved shooting since 2017. Make no mistake about it, these officers judged and executed James García.

We stand in full support of Phoenix City Council Member Carlos García in his call for transparency, accountability, and an independent investigation of all officer involved shootings.  

Philando Castile, like Jessie Hernández, Paul Rea, Erik Salgado and all the others who were killed by police in their cars, should be alive today. These killings must stop, the institution of policing must be dismantled and replaced with a transformative system of justice that values Black and brown lives.